Make an Electromagnet Using an Iron Nail


The aim of this science fair project is to make a simple electromagnet using iron nail.

Materials Required:

  1. A long iron nail
  2. A copper wire of length 1 meter (lightly insulated)
  3. 1 or two cells of batteries
  4. Paper clips

How to Make the Electromagnet?

  1. Remove the insulation at both the ends of the wire to a length of 2 centimeter.
  2. Attach one end of the copper wire to the positive side of the battery
  3. Closely wind the iron nail with the remaining copper wire but at least 10 centimeter of wire at the other end.
  4. Now attach the free end of the copper wire to the negative end of the battery.
  5. Bring the nail nearer to the paper clips. You can see that the nail is now a magnet and it attracts the paper clips.

Scientific Explanation:

When current passes through a coil, a magnetic field is created around it. This field magnetizes the core which is the iron nail, and this in turn attracts the paper clips.

How to improve your magnet’s strength?

  1. The thicker the core is, the better.
  2. The more closely the wire is wound together, the better
  3. The tighter the wire is wound around the core, the better.